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Bill Farquharson

The Sales Challenge

By Bill Farquharson

About Bill

As a 30 year sales veteran, Bill has the perspective of a been-there, done-that sales rep in the commercial print arena. Following sales fundamentals and giving unapologetically "old school" advice, he writes and speaks in an entertaining fashion to make his points to sales people and owners who sell. "Bill Farquharson will drive your sales momentum."

 

What to Do When You Are REALLY Down

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Note from Bill: In my video sales tip yesterday (go to http://sales.napl.org/sales-resources/ to view), I talked about hitting the sales wall and feeling discouraged. There is a dark place beyond that where a sales rep goes and often never comes back. I’ve been there both in my personal and professional life. What you are about to read is the story of how I got back.

This blog is to be read and the instructions followed only if and when you have hit rock bottom. You know the feeling if you are in sales. We’ve all been there:

OMG MY SALES SUCK. I’M ABOUT TO FAIL AND GET FIRED OR LOSE MY BUSINESS!!!!

If I have just described your present mood, keep reading. If you are happy and you know it, clap your hands, then print out this blog, put it in an envelope, and write, “Open in case of emergency.”

Do it. I’m not even kidding a little.

Okay, back to you who are down in the dumps. Come with me. We are going to take a journey together.

What would be the outcome if you spent your day saying the following over and over:

  • “I am the worst sales person in the world.”
  • “No one is going to take my call.”
  • “I am never going to get any appointments.”
  • “Why in the world would anyone buy from me?”

You don’t have to be a highly paid PI Blogger such as myself to figure out that such negative thinking is counter productive, self-destructive, and creates a self-fulfilling prophesy. Everyone agrees that you can talk yourself out of a sale, a sales call, and eventually a job simply by harboring such thoughts.

So, if that is true, can you talk yourself INTO a sale? Can you talk your way into success and even prosperity?

I believe you can and since it worked for me, I can attest to its effectiveness. But you are going to have to take a leap of faith and commit to a powerful act of thought. If you are not willing to do that, this is your second chance to stop reading now and go check out whatever brilliant blog Kelly Mallozzi has posted recently.

Good. Here is what I want you to do:

Find a quiet spot and arm yourself with paper and pen or computer. Plan to spend some uninterrupted time on this exercise (an hour should do it). What I want you to do is to write a letter to a good friend who lives far away. Someone you haven’t seen in a while. Write as if every sales goal you have ever had has been achieved. Describe how wildly successful you have become. Give details about how your prospecting calls are yielding spectacular results and how your clients reward your stellar sales efforts with loyalty. The more details you can give, the better this process will work for you. Share your achievements, the ramifications, and describe your happiness so that they can feel your emotions. When you are done, save the letter. Don’t mail it. Wake up tomorrow and reread it. Add to it. Go into even greater detail and expand on your original words with examples of your crazy success, the money that is flying in the door, and how you are in the rare air of elite sales status. Hold nothing back. You are da bomb!

What will happen? The result of this effort will be...well...actually I am not going to tell you and I am not going to make any promises. None were made for me when I did it and, if you continue reading below, you will see that it worked out pretty well. Try it and see for yourself. If you do, e-mail me (bfarquharson@napl.org) and tell me the outcome.

Is this a hokey exercise? Absolutely! Yet I guarantee that this powerful act of thought and faith will positively affect the course of your sales career, not to mention your life. Do it! Do it now!

Where this idea came from and what happened when I tried it the first time...

Roughly five years ago, I was in a really bad place personally. I will spare you the details but it was one of the lowest points in my life. My best friend handed me a book called “Notes From the Universe,” by Mike Dooley. In it, on page 100, was the suggestion for this exercise. I read it and put the book aside. The next day, still feeling down (really, really down...like clinical Depression-down), I remembered the suggestion and decided to try it. I sat for 90 minutes writing about how incredible my life was, how I had met the woman of my dreams, how my relationship with my daughters was better than at any point in my life, and how I was wealthy and happy beyond anything I had ever imagined.

Here’s the thing: None of that was true at the moment. Not a word. Quite the opposite, in fact.

I remember completing the letter at 11:30 am on a Saturday morning. The moment that I finished, a strange feeling came over me: I believed everything that I had written as if I was completely real. As a result, my entire outlook changed and there was a shift in energy that can only be described as seismic. It was as if someone had reached into my soul and removed every negative emotion and thought. Suddenly I was dwelling in what was possible and believing that not only could I succeed, but that I already had!

It was like I had been hypnotized. That is exactly what it felt like. For the rest of the day, I had a bounce in my step. If you’ve ever seen the hilarious movie “Office Space” then you know what I mean.

That’s when the second strange thing happened: I became a magnet. Others (strangers and friends), somehow sensing that there was something special going on, came up with excuses to talk to me. Everywhere I went, I attracted people.

From that moment on, everything changed.

That night at a party, the feeling was still there and though I went stag, I did not spend a minute alone. It was bizarre, truly bizarre. Through the simple act of changing my outlook and the negative assumptions I was making, I rewired my brain and changed the outcome of everything that I did.

This kind of Harry Potter wizardry is available to you at any time. Yes, it’s “out there.” Go ahead and mock it or ignore it if you like. As I said, if you aren’t willing to take a risk, don’t bother. As my favorite Chinese proverb goes, “When the student is ready, the teacher appears.” Clearly, you are not ready. That’s fine.

For the rest of you, what do you have to lose?

Free weekly sales tips and Short Attention Span Webinars are posted at http://sales.napl.org/sales-resources/. You can contact Bill at bfarquharson@napl.org or (201) 523-6357.

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